As transient population spikes, be aware of available resources
City councillor and food bank/drop-in centre manager Deb McIntosh is saying a recent increase in the city’s transient population is our cue to ensure residents have adequate information about the resources available in terms of social safety nets here in town.
“We seem to have an influx of ‘transients’ in the Castlegar area,” McIntosh said. “Some are very legitimate, and others are just grabbing what they can and moving on, some of whom are heading to Shambhala.”
Regardless the reason, she said you can be open-hearted without allowing anyone to take advantage of you.
“If you encounter someone in need, here is a resource list for you: Food Bank Monday/lunch and lunch programs on Wednesday and Friday from 10 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. at 614 Christina Place (in the basement of St. Davids Anglican Church).
“There is also a dinner served Thursday evenings at the Pentecostal Church located behind Castlegar Primary School just off of 7 Avenue at 4:30 p.m.
“We also have a Emergency Shelter that can be accessed by referral, usually through Mental Health and Addictions, a social worker or RCMP,” she added.
McIntosh said monetary assistance can be more harmful than helpful, under the wrong circumstances.
“I would be cautious about giving money,” she said. “f you want to help, perhaps purchase a sandwich or something transportable like fruit and juice.
“We are always happy to help out and I can be reached at 250-365-6440 during the day. RCMP have my number if they need to make a referral during the evening.”
The food bank and drop in centre always welcome donatation – call 250-365-6440 or pop by the Station Museum downtown (behind City Hall) and see McIntosh personally.